Editor’s Introduction

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Editor’s Introduction

Dear readers

Welcome to Issue 9 of Inscribe: A Journal of Undergraduate Writing, hosted by the English Language Centre (ELC) in its 25th year at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University.  

This latest issue has expanded its experiential opportunity for PolyU undergraduates by asking a committee of select students to be more involved in all areas of its publication, from workflow management to editing to original art design for stories. The student committee members met this challenge with aplomb. See more of their creative work on Inscribe’s new Instagram page.

As our undergraduates have increased their role within this latest publication, it is fitting that the theme of leaving one’s comfort zone to bravely face challenges on the road to greater self-actualisation is touched upon by many of the issue’s written works authored by seven PolyU students.

Four of these works originated as course assignments in ELC and CAR EWR subjects in the academic year 22-23. Student authors have continued to refine these texts through Inscribe’s interactive editing processes involving a mixture of peers and faculty. 

Tsoi Pok Kong starts the issue with his article Laughing is a Deadly Matter: The Double-Edged Sword of Comedy. It is a reminder to his generation about the importance of free speech, even when it is uncomfortable. He does this by exploring how comedians and satirists have historically served as canaries in the coal mines of censorship. 

Continuing on with the slings and arrows of the public stage, Chui Mei Yan Ceci shares a compelling story of one boy’s terrifying footsteps toward the hot spotlights of public speaking. She then offers the inside scoop on how he achieved each step. Follow his path in From Nerves to Confidence: How I Conquered the Stage.

In The Last Triton, Hui Nga Chit Cheryl takes the message of leaving one’s comfort zone to new depths in her short story about a young man who searches for his real home and his true self. This fantastical quest, however, may kill him. 

Fung C next transports our readers away from the dangerous depths below to the liberating skies above in her true-life journey of self-discovery as a young flight attendant. The previously wide-eyed student shares her turbulent ride in Behind the Glamorous Façade.

Ileana Pal’s fantasy short story, The Proditio Ring, returns readers to the more familiar setting of school.  But don’t get too comfortable. The author conjures up an unfamiliar force from out of the darkness. Amidst ancient curses and dangerous secrets, a group of university friends must discover who they really are before it’s too late.

Ngo Ka Him Kenneth’s article reminds us that not all challenges are mountainous life-changing obstacles. In Japanese Anime: A Genesis Art in Reality, he dares us to leave our preconceptions behind and join him in a behind-the-curtains look at the entertainment we all need to explore.

The ninth issue meets its end with The Magic Bullet by Noah Sadie. It is a sobering story about a special young girl confronting the mortality of a loved one and the hard truths she learns about herself in doing so.

Congratulations to these seven undergraduates for their engaging writing.

Issue 9 was produced and delivered with the invaluable leadership and service of an all-new student committee. Please do enjoy the fruits of their labour of love and the nectareous compositions of our undergraduates.



John Lawrence, Editor-in-Chief


Inscribe: A Journal of Undergraduate Writing in Asia is hosted and supported by the English Language Centre of The Hong Kong Polytechnic University.



  • Mr John Lawrence

Student Management Committee

Ms Ileana Pal (Managing Editor); Mr Rajesh Sagaya Raja (Assistant Manager and Banner Artist); Mr Shakran Salekin (External Content Curator); Ms Chui Mei Yan Ceci (Author); Ms Lei Chi Tong, Audrey (Social Media Manager); Ms Tanya Budhrani (Genre Editor); and Ms Tabassum Binte Awal Primia (Artist)

Editorial Panel

  • Mr Adam Barker
  • Mr Richard Brooke
  • Mr Adam Forrester
  • Dr Jane Robbins

Faculty Editors

  • Mr Jay Bidal
  • Dr Tim Lee
  • Mr Phil Todd


  • Ms Tracy Swemmer
  • Mr Freeman Tai

Director of the English Language Centre

  • Dr Jane Robbins

Senior Faculty Advisor

  • Ms Shari Lughmani

Founding Editor-in-Chief

  • Mr Dean A. F. Gui

Technical Staff

  • Dr Voyce Li
  • Mr Angelo Chu